Kaduna State Governor,Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, on Wednesday said since the inception of his administration maternal and child healthcare issues have been on the front burner.
El-Rufai noted that Kaduna has consistently observed the Maternal, Newborn and Child Health week which its won two prizes consecutively as the best performing State.
Speaking at the annual General Meeting and Scientific Conference of the Paediatric Association of Nigeria,held in Kaduna,the governor who was represented by his Deputy, Arch.Barnabas Bala Yusuf, said pregnant women and children under five years have access to free health services at state-owned health facilities.
The governor said the State is spending more than one billion Naira over a period of three years to strengthen routine immunization and increase vaccination coverage.
He added that,Kaduna has increased cold stores across the state and are already receiving cold chain equipment for all the 255 ward primary health centres currently being upgraded and renovated.
El-Rufai said: “To widen the net of coverage and ensure all residents of the state have access to healthcare without incurring out-of-pocket expenditure, our administration approved the establishment of a Contributory Health Scheme. Under the scheme, a pool of funds contributed by residents will be supplemented with funds from the state coffers and the federal government”
” Other notable achievements of the state include the scale up of polio surveillance; the last case of wild polio virus in Kaduna was November, 2012.
The State is spending more than one billion Naira over a period of three years to strengthen routine immunization and increase vaccination coverage. We have increased our cold stores across the state and are already receiving cold chain equipment for all the 255 Ward Primary Health Centres currently being upgraded and renovated”
” We signed a contract with GE Health to equip the 255 PHCs with modern equipment for the care of pregnant women, infants and children and have established a robust two-way referral system.
Last year, we signed another MoU with the UK’s Department for International Development and Melinda Gates Foundation to work together to strengthen the primary healthcare systems across various thematic areas. Only last week we launched the Phase I public health supply chain transformation project, the first of its kind in the country. It is a strong component of the MoU”
“Last week, the State held a summit on tackling malnutrition during which the Kaduna State emergency nutrition action plan (KADENAP) was launched. The school feeding programme is yet another milestone of this administration. We have forwarded to the State House of Assembly the Child Rights Bill to protect and enhance the welfare of the child. There is an inter-ministerial committee, chaired by the Deputy Governor, that ensures that government budget and policies address children issues”
” This is with the view to ensuring that we are deliberate on our investment on children. As partners in child healthcare, I would therefore enjoin you as you deliberate over the period of this meeting to fine tune the path to child survival in our dear country. The children of Kaduna State, Nigeria and the world look up to you. Let your voices be heard loud and clear, advocating for and promoting the wellbeing of the child” the governor said.